American Samoa’s Covid-19 Case Count Exceeds 700

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Thursday 17 March 2022. The latest published report by the American Samoa Department of Health (DOH) confirms the numbers of active cases in the Territory are on a rapid incline.

The report states that as of 14th March, the cumulative COVID-19 case count has risen to 718, with 61 of those individuals having recovered, leaving 653 active cases. That number could be substantially higher when the update is issued, expected Thursday (Wednesday in American Samoa).

During his latest address to the nation, Lt Governor Talauega Eleasalo Ale announced a new “Covid Safety” strategy that places the emphasis of responsibility upon each individual. He urged the people of American Samoa to make sure they have received their vaccination shots for the well-being of their family, friends and community. He called on business leaders to play their role in ensuring the safety of their employees and customers, to make certain they have been vaccinated, tested and treated.

“If you have symptoms, please come in and be tested. If you have been tested positive, please, isolate yourself,” pleads the Lt Governor.

Attorney General Fainuulelei Alailima Utu outlined in the press conference that businesses which are considered non-essential still cannot open, however, these businesses may submit a request to open. Schools will close with classes to be conducted virtually. Outdoor public gatherings may have up to 20 people, while the limit is 10 for any indoor activities.

Meantime veteran American Samoa politician Senator Tuaolo Manaia Eti Tuiletufuga Fruean, elected Senate President in January 2021, has called for better communication from the Lt Governor.

Tuaolo observed that while schools are closed, the StarKist factory with it’s 2000 workers, remained open.

The Senate President said people were being made to sit together in a tent to await swab results when they went in to be tested.

Meantime, a team from the US Department of Health and Human Services arrived into the Territory on Saturday to assist the emergency unit of the main hospital, the LBJ (Lyndon Baines Johnson).